Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Sham Appearance

On Monday, Hillary Clinton said to Anderson Cooper

What happened this time, though, was it didn't dissipate, and that's why when I got off the road on Friday, I did go to see my doctor, and that's when I was diagnosed with pneumonia...I just didn't think it was going to be that big of deal...I think it's fair to say that people know more about me than almost anyone in public life...It's really past time for [Trump] to be held to the same standards, not just as me, but as anybody else who has sought this job.

The chances of that happening are fat and slim.   There has been little pressure on Donald Trump to release his tax returns and the media ultimately will be satisfied with what little is revealed by the GOP candidate about his physical condition.

We know this from two people, Kellyanne Fitzpatrick Conway and Mehmet Oz.  Trump will be taping the Dr. Oz show on Wednesday for a segment to be aired the following day. Politico reports

Oz said in an interview with Brian Kilmeade on the Fox News Radio program “Kilmeade & Friends” that he will reveal his medical assessment of the records submitted by Trump before the studio audience, calling it Trump’s decision to do so.

“It’s his personal records. I want to ask him pointed questions about his health,” Oz said.

Oz is suggesting that he will ask pointed questions to which he does not expect to get an answer. When Kilmeade asked what would happen if there are “embarrassing things” in the records. Oz responded,

Well, I bet you he won’t release them. … It’s his decision.

The metaphor for me is it’s the doctor’s office, the studio. So I’m not going to ask him questions he doesn’t want to have answered, and I also don’t want to talk about anybody else. We’re not going to be talking about Secretary Clinton, for sure.

We won't talk about Hillary Clinton but Trump will get a few hanging curves and talk about Clinton all he wants.

Last week, when Matt Lauer at MSNBC's Commander-in-Chief Forum asked Trump to "try to keep the attacks to a minimum" and the candidate agreed "to a minimum, absolutely," Trump responded to at least eight queries by pivoting to Clinton.  These pertained to sending soldiers "into harm's way," Trump's belief that he knows more about ISIL than do the generals, losing "faith in the military commanders," learning "new things in that (intelligence) briefing," getting Vladimir Putin "to change his mind on some of these key issues," supporting veterans, readiness "on day one.... to tackle these national security issues," and consideration of "that first decision that puts American men and women in harm's way."

Lauer didn't stop Trump from veering off topic and it's unlikely the Wizard of Oz will get him to release full health information, in the unlikely event he wants him to.  In what appears to be a pre-emptive rationale for Trump's continued opaqueness, campaign co-chairperson Conway told Andrea Mitchell Tuesday "Remember, I’m with Dr. Oz and millions of Americans on this. I don’t know why we need such extensive medical reporting when we all have a right to privacy."  At least she and the celebrity doctor are on the same page.

That right to privacy does not extend to Hillary Clinton, of course. But it will apply when Dr. Mehmet Oz chats with Donald Trump, who will reveal only what it is in his best interests to reveal.

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